JUPITER, Fla. -- Pitching coach Derek Lilliquist said he has no intentions of drastically changing the spring blueprint long ago laid out by Dave Duncan, who, because of personal reasons, stepped aside after serving as St. Louis' pitching coach for the last 16 seasons.
"The recipe for his chocolate cake is pretty good," was the analogy Lilliquist used on Saturday. "Maybe there are some sprinkles here and there. But the recipe has been good."
Lilliquist has been in fairly constant communication with Duncan since shifting from bullpen coach to pitching coach in January. Lilliquist said he anticipates that those discussions will continue through the season, too.
Though Lilliquist was recently handed the reins to a new role, this marks his 11th season with the organization. Before becoming bullpen coach last year, Lilliquist served as a pitching coach and pitching coordinator in the Minors. Those extensive ties to the Cardinals allowed Lilliquist to spend years watching Duncan at work during Spring Training.
"Dave has been a tremendous mentor for me, even not so much last year, but the big league camps that I was involved with before," Lilliquist said. "The philosophies, the fundamentals are all tried, proven, tested for all the years he's done it. It's going to be business as usual for the 'Birds."